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Head and Neck Oncologic Surgery in the COVID-19 Pandemic: Our Experience in a Deep South Tertiary Care Center
  • Erin Buczek, MD
Erin Buczek, MD
University of Alabama at Birmingham
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Abstract

Introduction
The ongoing worldwide pandemic due to COVID-19 has forced drastic changes on the daily lives of the global population. This is most notable within the healthcare sector. The current paper outlines the response of the head and neck oncologic surgery (HNS) division within our academic otolaryngology department in the state of Alabama.
Methods
Data with regard to case numbers and types were obtained during the pandemic and compared with time matched data. Our overall approach to managing previously scheduled and new cases, personal protective equipment (PPE) utilization, outpatient clinic, and resident involvement is summarized.
Discussion
Our HNS division saw a 55% reduction in surgical volume during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. We feel that an early and cohesive strategy to triaging surgical cases, PPE usage, and minimizing exposure of personnel is essential to providing care for HNS patients during this pandemic.